Psychotherapists and Counsellors Answer your Questions

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  • Kat Smiley
    I knew at the age of 13 that I wanted to help others and my ability to listen to friends was evident even then. So it made sense to become a counsellor. My ability to connect with others and strong relationship skills in being able to listen fully helped me know that being a counsellor is what I need to do, to support others and facilitate the changes they want and need in their lives. ...
  • Lia Lawton
    I remember when I was about 25 I went to a psychologist and told her something, her response to me was "Now I am not judging you, but do you think that is a good life choice?" I felt very judged from that comment and decided I didn't want others to feel that way so I went home that night and applied for Psychology. I wanted to be a safe space where people could say anything to and I would not judge. I know that we all have our own paths and I want to be able to empower you to make the right decision for yourself and not what others...
  • Jonathan Tandos
    Most of my life people have been coming to me to share their stories and issues. In my first experience as a client in counselling I felt inspired and began to consider whether I wanted to be a therapist myself. When I first started studying psychology it fit me, which was in stark contrast to what previous studies felt like. It feels like its genuinely me. People fascinate me and my curiosity and empathy in the work has not diminished in two decades. As a creative person, dealing with the complexities of people has been a...
  • Michael Dods
    I've spent lot's of time with people from all walks of life and backgrounds and am an inherently curious person who tries to understand people and human relationships. I've always been a big reader and enjoyed reading authors that understand the complexity of people and the human experience. I previously worked in physical health and found that the origins of people's physical suffering was often more complex than initially appeared. This lead me to want to understand people and human suffering at a deeper and more complex level. ...
  • Jila Baker
    I have observed a lot of pain and the possibility of healing is available that gives hope to individuals and future generations....
  • Jacquie Flecknoe-Brown
    I was always interested in communication, and the more experienced I became in my profession, the deeper I wanted to explore the therapy modalities. I worked for some time in an acute psychiatric ward where I learned family therapy (Milan school) and realised that even in psychosis, every act and statement was symbolic and had a meaning for the person, and even if it was difficult to decipher, with persistence one could understand the message the person was trying to communicate. This lead me to the master analyst of symbolic...
  • Nathan Dick
    As a manager, leader, parent, uncle and partner over the last 20 years I have found people often seeking me out for advice and support with the challenges of life. After many suggesting that I take up a career in counselling and psychotherapy I finally made the decision to do so. ...
  • Trudy Clutterbok
    Art and literature explore what it is to be a human being and some art works and books explore psychoanalysis in particular. Studying counselling and then psychoanalysis was a logical extension of my interest in these themes and practices....
  • Tom Skotidas
    Ever since my early 20s, I have wanted to help people become resilient and thrive. I got married young (25 years old), and at that time, due to the cultural pressures I experienced around providing for my family, I chose to ignore my calling, and go down the sales & marketing path. When COVID took hold, I had plenty of time to reflect on who I was, and who I wanted to be. At that time, I decided to move back into psychotherapy. I have experienced significant meaning and purpose in my life ever since....
  • Matthew Austin
    My parents were foster parents and i was exposed to social workers and social services at a young age. Through my social work career i got to know colleagues who were counsellors and was drawn to working more intimately one on one with clients. ...
  • Michele Stewart
    Difficult childhood experiences and getting 'lost' emotionally in my late teens/ twenties lead to a thirst for understanding what it means to be fully human. Training as a therapist seemed the route that offered to deepen a knowledge of myself and to assist others to embark on a journey inwards as well....
  • Sirini Kularatne-Samarapathi
    I have had an interest from a very young age to connect with people - to be present in their difficulties, to sit with their uncomfortable emotions. I guess that was what eventually got transpired in me becoming a professional counsellor. My Buddhist practises of compassion, loving kindness, meditation and mindful awareness practices paved the way for my internal development and my profession to be part and parcel of the same....
  • Karen Thomas
    In the early 2000s I reached a cross-road and a knowing that something was missing in my personal life and in my career. So I began studying psychotherapy and took classes at the Cairnmillar Insitute in Melbourne, Australia. Immersed in the field of psychotherapy, there awakened in me a passion for understanding people's inner emotional and psychological worlds and helping them in their growth and healing. Prior to counselling, I worked for many years in education as an academic, teaching Indonesian language, and in business as...
  • Linda Sawrey
    Significant family illnesses which changed my world overnight as a teenager, set my path towards caring and supporting. Firstly I went into nursing and specialised in Patient Safety and Quality. Trying to make the world a better place for those that needed help the most was core to my soul. ...
  • Lisa Moore
    I am drawn to counselling by a genuine desire to make a positive impact on people's lives. I care deeply about the well-being of others and find immense satisfaction in providing support during difficult times. For me personally, I derive joy from seeing clients grow, heal, and overcome obstacles, knowing that I played a part in their journey towards greater well-being. At the same time, the field of counselling is dynamic and ever-evolving, offering unparalleled opportunities for continuous learning and personal growth. Working...
  • Petroula Quinn
    I have always been drawn to helping people and therefore I gravitated to Psychology. I thoroughly enjoy what I do - assisting clients through difficult times and helping them live out their potential. ...
  • Nigel Bailey
    I have always been fascinated by human psychology and behaviour. I worked in the creative industry for many years where this was regularly interpreted and applied from a very particular perspective. Increasingly, I found my attention turning towards a more human-centred and empathic interpretation of human needs, in alignment with my sustainable design objectives. From this, direct engagement as a therapist became the logical conclusion. I returned to university as a (very) mature student and have never looked back....
  • Debra Sumner
    As a people's person I love to interact with a broad range of individuals from multi cultured and diverse backgrounds, I found people asking me how did I achieve the things I had done. This included being a Triathlete, a Laboratory Technician, a Business Management Consultant and a mother. This made me ask the question of how do I give people support and advice if I have no training in this area, so I set off to undertake mature age studies and found my love of helping people inspired me me to gain a degree in Counselling develop my...
  • Natalie Anderson
    I am drawn to working with individuals who may be dealing with challenges which can negatively affect mental health as I know from experience that whether these create or trigger trauma, and how long this may continue to be acute or prolonged, can depend on how supported they feel in acknowledging and processing their emotional responses, and gradually beginning to make meaning from these events. I am an excellent listener and have been told that I have a calming voice and presence, and this helps to create a safe space to walk...
  • Karen Druce
    My family of origin experiences growing up formed the bedrock of my desire to understand individual differences, personal temperament, human suffering and resilience, in the face of life’s storms and relational challenges. ...
  • Robin Wilkinson
    Like many therapists, I've come into my profession through my own healing journey. But I've always been a space holder for people. I'm the one people turn to when they need to discuss something or process emotions. I'm calm, non-judgemental and a good listener. I've also been fascinated by psychology, consciousness and human potential for many years. When I was a shiatsu therapist, my favourite part was post-treatment, when clients were feeling relaxed and expansive and would start talking about what was going on for them...
  • Margaret Bennett
    I loved my training, and working with people. What brought me, especially to trauma work was lived experiences as well as rigorous training and deep faith in people's ability to not only heal but to THRIVE....
  • Matthew Evans
    I wanted to make a contribution to people’s health, happiness and wellbeing. I had a longstanding personal interest in the field of psychology and it seemed a natural step to turn it into my profession. ...
  • Reed Everingham
    During my early twenties, I had my first encounter with psychotherapy. Working with a wonderful practitioner for several years profoundly imprinted on me. For the first time, I truly understood what it felt like to repair, grow, and change. 30+ years later, this experience set me on a path of personal development to understand myself and others better. As a result, I pursued studies in relational and person-centred therapies and obtained postgraduate qualifications in Counselling & Psychotherapy. ...
  • Mary A McIntyre
    I have a passion for understanding people and offering the right help at the right time. Past challenges in my life like stress and chronic pain have shifted due to having had good therapy in various healing modalities for the last 35 years. So I am a believer in effective work. This is what led me to go further and help others....
  • Kate McMaugh
    I originally chose to study psychology as an 18 year old who was interested in "brains and behaviour" but I did not come from an academic family at all (I am the first person in my family to finish school) So I really had little idea what a psychologist did and I don't think I had ever met one! However it turned out that my choice, all those years ago, was a lucky one, as I love what I do. As I got older and more aware of my profession it was the mind-body connection and the huge potential of the human being to heal that really...
  • Debbie O'Connor
    Since I was a child I have always been interested and curious about people, what makes them the unique individuals they are, and have always had a keen desire to help people in distress. I began my career in the helping professions in the field of nursing, however after the death of a close relative through suicide, I became increasingly aware of the distress that so many people feel as a result of traumatic life experiences and mental health concerns. At this time I also embarked on my own personal development and therapy, and...
  • Priya Rajan
    I was drawn to a career in psychotherapy/counseling due to a deep passion for helping others navigate their mental and emotional challenges. This was inspired from personal experiences with therapy that inspire me to pay it forward. Another motivating factor was a desire to understand and address the complexities of the human mind. I come across as an empathetic person with strong listening skills, and a genuine interest in human behavior hence I naturally gravitated towards this profession. Additionally, this field offers the...
  • Leif Lawson
    I feel I was always driven to the 'helping professions' from a young age. Being of an introverted nature, I enjoy listening and observing and noticed that this came in handy as I developed and moved into my career. I'm always thinking about what makes us 'tick' as humans, why we behave as we do and how our early attachments and experiences help shape us as to WHO we are today. After many years working in the tertiary education field, I decided to make my hobby of yoga/fitness into a part time job. During these years, I...
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